\ ˈkrest How to pronounce crest (audio) \

Definition of crest

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a showy tuft or process on the head of an animal and especially a bird — see bird illustration
b : the plume or identifying emblem worn on a knight's helmet also : the top of a helmet
c(1) : a heraldic representation of the crest
(2) : a heraldic device depicted above the escutcheon (see escutcheon sense 1) but not upon a helmet
d : a ridge or prominence on a part of an animal body
2 : something suggesting a crest especially in being an upper prominence, edge, or limit: such as
a : peak especially : the top line of a mountain or hill
b : the ridge of a roof
c : the top of a wave
3a : a high point of an action or process and especially of one that is rhythmic
b : climax, culmination at the crest of his fame


crested; cresting; crests

Definition of crest (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to furnish with a crest also : crown
2 : to reach the crest of crested the hill and looked around

intransitive verb

: to rise to a crest waves cresting in the storm

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Other Words from crest


crestal \ ˈkre-​stᵊl How to pronounce crest (audio) \ adjective
crestless \ ˈkrest-​ləs How to pronounce crest (audio) \ adjective

Examples of crest in a Sentence

Noun at that point the filmmaker was at the crest of his critical acclaim, which included winning an Oscar the hiking party reached the crest of the mountain just as it began to thunder Verb We crested the hill and looked out around us.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Passengers will also scale an 80-foot-tall top-hat tower (so named because of its steep rise, short crest and steep drop). Arthur Levine, USA TODAY, "Most-anticipated roller coasters of 2021 at Universal Orlando, on a Carnival cruise ship and more," 22 Dec. 2020 The way their heads crest and fall, while shaking their flightless bodies to do the conga! Wired Staff, Wired, "The Best TikToks of 2020," 17 Dec. 2020 Cinnamon sticks, tallow berry and acorns, which are part of the Vanderbilt family crest, are used throughout the Biltmore House. Virginia Brown, Washington Post, "Seven ways to elevate your holiday decorating, according to the pros at Biltmore," 10 Dec. 2020 Neural crest cells also play a role in vocalization, another trait that reflects domestication. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, "Weirdly, Monkeys Keep Domesticating Themselves. Huh.," 27 Oct. 2020 Side by side, the two fossils don’t look exactly alike: The original specimen’s snout looks more tapered, while the new specimen’s snout appears to have a central crest. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, "The smallest known dinosaur is actually a peculiar ancient lizard," 13 Aug. 2020 Ridge ends typically come to a point of sorts, and that’s where bucks like to lie down, usually a little below the ridge’s crest, facing the downhill slope and with the wind at their backs. Dave Hurteau, Field & Stream, "How to Sneak Up on a Bedded Buck," 8 Dec. 2020 The male mating ritual includes showing off a pink head crest and presenting colorful objects once the female is in the ideal viewing position. Mary Bates, Animals, "Which optical illusions can animals see?," 24 Nov. 2020 Win in desert Sunday combined with Week 10 defeat of Seahawks restores L.A. to divisional crest. Nate Davis, USA TODAY, "NFL playoff picture after Week 13: Vikings in, Cardinals out of last NFC wild-card spot," 7 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Escalade trim levels that start over $100,000, and even the lower trims can crest the six-figure mark with options. Connor Hoffman, Car and Driver, "Almost Half of 2021 Cadillac Escalades Have Sold for over $100K," 5 Jan. 2021 Johnson Creek is forecast to crest below flood stage Sunday afternoon. Mike Rogoway, oregonlive, "Portland metro Sunday weather: Downpours continue, some rivers face flood risk," 20 Dec. 2020 Many experts have predicted that a new coronavirus wave could crest as colder temperatures push people inside and families and friends gather to celebrate. Luke Money, Los Angeles Times, "Halloween a do-or-die moment in California fight against fall COVID-19 wave," 31 Oct. 2020 Temperatures are expected to crest near 65 degrees. oregonlive, "Portland metro Tuesday weather: Wet, windy conditions expected," 13 Oct. 2020 The case started before the April election for state Supreme Court, when the pandemic began to crest for the first time. Patrick Marley, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "In reversal, court says Wisconsin absentee ballots must be returned by Election Day," 8 Oct. 2020 In southeastern Alabama, forecasters warned of river flooding in rural Coffee County, where the Pea River was expected to crest Friday at a near-record 12 feet above flood stage. Anchorage Daily News, "Rescue, recovery and a wary eye on rising rivers in the US South in the wake of Hurricane Sally," 17 Sep. 2020 In southeastern Alabama, forecasters warned of river flooding in rural Coffee County, where the Pea River was expected to crest Friday at a near-record 12 feet above flood stage. Arkansas Online, "After Sally: Rescue, recovery and a wary eye on rivers," 17 Sep. 2020 Jack Cullen, meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said Bayou Sara is expected to crest to 5 feet on Wednesday morning, and above the typical 4-foot flood stage. al, "‘A sandbag is all that will save me’: In one coastal Alabama city, residents prepare for flooding from Sally," 14 Sep. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'crest.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of crest


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for crest

Noun and Verb

Middle English creste, from Anglo-French, from Latin crista; probably akin to Latin crinis hair

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Time Traveler for crest

Time Traveler

The first known use of crest was in the 14th century

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Statistics for crest

Last Updated

15 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Crest.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for crest


\ ˈkrest How to pronounce crest (audio) \

Kids Definition of crest

1 : a showy growth (as of flesh or feathers) on the head of an animal
2 : the highest part or point of something the crest of the wave the crest of a hill
3 : an emblem or design used to represent a family, group, or organization

Other Words from crest

crested \ ˈkres-​təd \ adjective


\ ˈkrest How to pronounce crest (audio) \

Medical Definition of crest

1 : a showy tuft or process on the head of an animal and especially a bird
2 : a process or prominence on a part of an animal body: as
a : the upper curve or ridge of the neck of a quadruped (as a horse) also : the mane borne on such a crest
b : a ridge especially on a bone the crest of the tibia — see frontal crest, occipital crest

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